With US Military Bases and Spies, People Die! Close Waihopai Spybase! Ban the Bases!

Statement of Solidarity 16 April 2012 International Day of Action against US Military Bases

Press Release ABC - 17 April 2012

New Zealand – The Anti-Bases Campaign together with Philippines Solidarity Network of Aotearoa (PSNA), Auckland Philippines Solidarity (APS) and Wellington Kiwi Pinoy (WKP) convey support to the worldwide Ban the Bases protest actions against the annual bilateral war exercises between the Philippines and the US beginning on 16th April.

Here in New Zealand, we continue to demand the closure of the Waihopai spybase. Waihopai does not operate in the interests of New Zealanders or our neighbours. At the expense of NZ taxpayers, it is a foreign spybase on NZ soil and directly involves us in US wars. Although officially a 'New Zealand' facility, Waihopai is an American spybase in everything but name.

Almost four years ago - 30 April 2008, three peace activists - Adrian Leason, Fr Peter Murnane and Sam Land - entered the grounds of the NZ Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) / US National Security Agency spy base at Waihopai and punctured the dome covering one of the two antenna to disable and draw attention to the role of the base - part of the US government's global spy network - in the 'war on terrorism'. The Waihopai spybase was subjected to unprecedented public attention by the March 2010 trial and acquittal of the three Ploughshares peace activists.

Anti-bases campaigners in New Zealand are now appealing against the government’s “civil claim” worth $1.2 million of damages in favour of the GCSB. In fact the US has proved to be the number one terrorist. For all its wars that resulted to massive civilian deaths and destruction, no one else but the US government deserves to face massive civil claims and be held accountable for its crimes against humanity.

We fully support the calls of the people in the Philippines, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Guam to end US military presence in their countries. We are one with all anti-bases and anti-war movements in opposing the escalation of US-led wars of intervention and aggression.

World peace would be impossible so long as the US and its allies continue their wars of aggression to secure control of oil-rich countries and every attractive place for their imperialist economic interests.

Murray Horton

Organiser, Anti-Bases Campaign (ABC) and Secretary, Philippines Solidarity Network of Aotearoa (PSNA)